When Joe Pagano attended a Human Coalition event four years ago, he never imagined that one day he’d be working on the front lines of our Contact Center. As a call center manager for Verizon, Joe had supervised their daily operations, unaware that God was building his professional résumé to accomplish Kingdom work.
“I remember listening intently as Brian Fisher described Human Coalition’s inbound call center,” Joe recalls. “When he explained how they receive calls and chat messages from abortion-determined women, test scripts, and monitor their effectiveness, I leaned over to my wife and whispered, ‘Hey, that’s what I do.’”
What some might consider a coincidence, Joe’s wife Mandy attributes to God moving in their lives. “Following that event, God was stirring something in our hearts. I just didn’t know what it was.” And then the call from Human Coalition came, offering Joe the position of Contact Center Director.
“There was no doubt in my mind that God was calling us there,” Mandy says. “But He had to work on my husband’s heart a little bit.”
Having grown up in Pittsburgh, Joe and Mandy had deep roots in this former steel town. Along with their six small children, they were heavily involved in their local church and enjoyed the luxury of having grandparents and cousins living close by. “Uprooting my family and moving 1,200 miles to Dallas, Texas, had never been on my radar,” Joe says. “I felt pulled between God calling me to leave my for-profit job and work full-time at Human Coalition, and staying close to my extended family and everything I’d ever known.”
Mandy, however, remained steadfast. “After that initial job offer, I knew God was in it. It seemed like everywhere I looked, God was giving us signs that He wanted us to move. The confirmations were so clear.”
After weeks of prayer-filled deliberation, Joe and Mandy made the joint decision to say good-bye to their friends and family, and move their six children to Dallas.
In a whirlwind of activity, the Paganos packed, moved, and resettled in North Dallas; and Joe began working at Human Coalition during the last week of 2015. When asked how their six children handled the cross-country move to Texas, the couple laughs. “They couldn’t have been more excited,” Mandy says. “We explained that Daddy was going to work to save babies. And without exception, they were all on board.”
Since that time, Joe and Mandy have exemplified what it means to be pro-life. “Being part of an organization that values the inherent dignity of every person has challenged us to be more involved in our community and to truly love our neighbors.” To that end, both Joe and Mandy have plugged in to their local church and their kids’ schools, openly sharing Christ’s love with everyone God puts in their path.
When asked about the most rewarding part of being involved with Human Coalition, Joe and Mandy agree it’s watching their children catch the vision. “Our kids are just as much a part of Human Coalition’s mission as we are,” Joe explained. “Without apology, they will tell anyone and everyone that their dad saves babies from abortion.”
“Our kids see their dad as a superhero,” Mandy says with tears in her eyes. “Honestly, the pride they feel for what their dad is doing is amazing. In their eyes, their father has grown by leaps and bounds.” She adds, “Seeing my husband so publicly take a stance for something has increased my respect for him. Knowing Joe took a big leap and trusted God’s call makes me love him all the more.”
In addition to bringing their children into the Human Coalition fold, the Paganos have shared our organization’s mission with their neighbors and their church. Last year, they led their youth group on a field trip to our main office, where they explained how we rescue children, educating today’s youth on the importance of standing up for LIFE.
“Human Coalition is a special place,” Mandy remarks. “They’ve changed the verbiage surrounding abortion. Instead of parroting political talking points, they’re telling real stories about the women who come through the Contact Center looking for an abortion. It’s because Human Coalition is showing the human side of the abortion story that I believe abortion will end in our lifetime.”